Yesterday, I received an email from Matt Ferraguto, Director of Communication at Reach Out and Read, about the new Reach Out and Read website in Spanish. I’m happy to paste in the press release, but would encourage you to spend some time exploring the site – even if you don’t speak Spanish (or speak Spanish well). The site is designed to offer native Spanish speakers access to the online tools we generally take for granted. This is an ideal site for those working with English Language Learners and their families.
Today, Reach Out and Read, the evidence-based initiative that prepares America’s youngest children to succeed in school, unveiled the Spanish-language version of its national website. The new website, which will serve as a clearinghouse for literacy and school readiness resources for Spanish-speaking families, is a cornerstone of Reach Out and Read’s nationwide outreach efforts targeting the Latino community.
Reach Out and Read serves more than one million Latino children and families nationwide, and 86% of Reach Out and Read Programs serve families for whom Spanish is their first language. In 2007, Reach Out and Read developed the Leyendo Juntos (Reading Together) initiative to assist participating doctors in effectively encouraging Latino families to read with their children. Materials and public awareness campaigns created by the initiative have been very popular with medical providers and Spanish-speaking families alike.
While Reach Out and Read has 14 published research studies that demonstrate the effectiveness of the program, its impact on Spanish-speaking families has been found to be even more significant. In fact, one study found that Spanish-speaking parents served by Reach Out and Read were up to 10 times more likely to read to their children every day than those not served by the program. Those children are more likely to enter kindergarten prepared to succeed.
“This new website will be an invaluable resource to Spanish-speaking families everywhere,” said Mariana Glusman, Chair of the Leyendo Juntos National Advisory Committee for Reach Out and Read. “Reading aloud is one of the most important things parents can do to prepare their children for kindergarten. This website highlights why reading aloud is so important and provides families with reading tips, recommended book lists, and a guide to developmental milestones for their children. The website even includes information on how Spanish-speaking families can support or volunteer for Reach Out and Read in their communities.”
Reach Out and Read has committed to reaching out to Latino families everywhere, whether or not they are currently served by the program. The new website, which includes reading tips, lists of doctor-recommended children’s books, developmental milestones of early literacy, and information about the importance of reading aloud, is a key component of this initiative. In addition, Reach Out and Read is developing a Public Service Announcement (PSA) campaign specifically targeted to Spanish-speaking families through Spanish-language radio stations, billboards, and the Internet.
Check out Reach Out and Read’s new Spanish language website today!http://www.reachoutandread.org/esp/